Cost Of Living | 

Charity warns parents are facing 'stark choices' between food and heating

Barnardos has warned that almost two-thirds of parents have had to make “really stark choices” and go without essentials over the past six months.
With the cost of fuel, food and housing surging, everyone is feeling the pinch. Photo: Stock image

With the cost of fuel, food and housing surging, everyone is feeling the pinch. Photo: Stock image

Neasa Cumiskey

Families are facing “daily stresses” of choosing between food, electricity, healthcare, and heating, according to a children’s charity.

Barnardos has warned that almost two-thirds of parents have had to make “really stark choices” and go without essentials over the past six months.

Around one in four households have had to cut back on food, heating, or electricity while more than a third have had to cut back on clothes and one in six have gone without medical appointments and medicines.

Barnardos CEO Suzanne Connolly said that it’s unacceptable that the cost-of-living crisis is having such a negative impact on children in low-income families.

“That doesn’t sit very well considering children and parents are suffering now,” she said.

“I would really like the Taoiseach to give consideration to that. Imagine himself in a family dealing with these daily stresses.

“How would he feel? It is within his power to do something now.”

Barnardos chief executive Suzanne Connolly

Barnardos chief executive Suzanne Connolly

Ms Connolly said the charity is “really concerned” about how children’s health, wellbeing and development will be impacted by the cost-of-living crisis.

Barnardos is calling on the Government to set up a hardship fund for low-income families and work with energy companies to ensure those struggling are on the lowest tariffs.

“Can you imagine being a parent and having to think, ‘God, do I buy the weekly shop to the extent that I need it, or do I bring my child to the doctor?’” Ms Connolly said.

“What is more important than the daily lives of these children and parents living in these really unprecedented times?

“We as a society need to be do something about it and the Government has the power to do that.”


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